First, I know that I need more sailing experience. I have a co-worker who has offered a trip on their sailboat next time I am in Florida
. And I have a friend who wants me to go sailing in California
sometime. Plus, I would take classes
before doing anything.
However the cruising lifestyle seems like a good match for my personality and my quest to escape the snow in the winter and the heat in the summer.
I also like having plans and knowing it is possible to achieve a dream. But, if there is something obviously not practical, please tell me.
I have nothing against the professionally built catamarans, they are very nice. And if I didn't have to wipe out my entire retirement
and savings account, I might be able to afford one and maintain it. (If one of my inventions takes off and I don't have to worry about money
, I would go for one of them)
I would want to build one myself (and with help from others) for between $20,000-$30,000 in the 34 ft. range. Not that it would be laid out like a professional 34 ft. boat in terms of living space, but the hulls would be 34 ft long. (They would be longer if it weren't for taxes
and fees). And I will want to work on this full time, and get it in the water
within 6-12 months (I'm an optimist). I already have a solar
power system and inverter
that would work, and doesn't get factored into the budget
. And 400 ah of LiFePO4
batteries @ 48V wouldn't be included in that price
. I am looking to sail close to my hometown in Michigan and the Great Lakes
during the summer, and down the ICW
to Key West
, PR, and the BVI during the winter.
I am looking for modern simplicity. There would be some nice features, but the boat can be left alone for a day or two at anchor
and there won't be anything easy to steal.
I am looking for a 'simple' boat construction process that I could do. I am good at wood-working and non-welding metal work. I'm also good at making polycarbonate windows and any electrical
I would like to find out more about this building process.
A nice hammock in the cockpit
area when at anchor
would be nice (as well as bug nets all around).
area will have a bimini
over it, similar to this one made out of solar panels
Hopefully that stuff is pretty non-controversial and doesn't 'rock the boat'.
Now for the 'different' stuff.
I would like to keep the weight down (although I'm not sure the marine plywood
process is very lightweight.). I would be ok with an air mattress double bed
(maybe one of those sleep number beds as an 'upgrade' later)
I only need two berths and one head
. I would like the head
to be bigger than normally found. Converting one berth to a salon
during the day would be possible. In the galley
, I only need a stove, sink, and a refrigerator/freezer. An outdoor grill
and a food
prep table would be used often.
It would have an electric motor
in both hulls. Or one centrally mounted one. Although I think two work be much more efficient at turning. I'll have to think about that one some more.
One of the aft berths would be converted into a storage
locker accessible from the cockpit. I would like to travel with a few bikes, and I would think that is easier than trying to squeeze them through the interior
I also don't like waves very much, so at a minimum, I would use something like this while at anchor.
Challenge: How to Stop Rolling at Anchor
Roll Control Devices
The crazy part of me would want to do a few other modifications to help it sail smoother in choppy seas.
I would also like a digny that could carry bicycles easily along with two people.
There is probably a lot more that I will think of in the next few days. I have started to look at prices for sailing hardware
, and electronics
though, and the budget
could go pretty fast.